Asian markets gained in early trading Tuesday as Middle East tensions remained high, but at least didn’t rise any higher.
U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Monday said U.S. troops are not planning on pulling out of Iraq, despite the release of a draft letter than suggested as much, and also said that despite threats from President Donald Trump, the U.S. would not target Iranian cultural sites if further hostilities break out.
U.S. stocks gained Monday after a mid-session rally, and crude oil prices, which had surged the past two trading days since a U.S. airstrike killed a top Iranian general in Iraq, retreated Tuesday amid the geopolitical lull. West Texas Intermediate crude for February delivery
and March Brent crude
, the global benchmark, were last both down more than 1%. Gold prices
also fell from a seven-year high Monday.
jumped 1.4%, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index
rose 0.5%. The Shanghai Composite
edged up 0.4% while the Shenzhen Composite
advanced 0.8%. South Korea’s Kospi
gained 1%. Stocks rose in Singapore
, but fell in Taiwan
and were about flat in Indonesia
. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200
Among individual stocks, Sony
gained in Tokyo trading, as did auto makers such as Toyota
. In Hong Kong, casino operator Galaxy Entertainment
rose; along with tech giant Tencent
advanced in South Korea, while Oil Search
gained in Australia.